Economist Podcasts+
2024 Finalist

Economist Podcasts+

The Economist

London, United Kingdom

Category Audio

Overview of this campaign

With our podcast audience doubling in the past three years, audio has proven to be an important way to bring Economist journalism to new and diverse audiences. The subscription service was born out of our belief that our podcasts should follow the same business model used across our digital and print editions. EP+ allows us to provide high-quality journalism to our worldwide subscribers at a fair price.

From September 2023, The Economist undertook an extensive marketing campaign designed to get existing listeners (who were not subscribers) to sign up to pre-purchase their EP+ subscription in advance of the launch. The campaign also helped to raise awareness among existing Economist subscribers of the value being added to their subscription. The key marketing channel for these communications were the shows themselves, as show hosts promoted a pre-purchase offer for five weeks prior to launch. 

These efforts were supported by emails, onsite, paid search and PR activity, as well as promotion from Apple as part of The Economist’s partnership with the company.


Results for this campaign

This was a revolutionary undertaking. No other major media outlet had done this before. It was a business and editorial risk, but one The Economist believed worth taking. It is the future of podcast journalism. 

In the words of The Economist’s President, Bob Cohn: 

The decision to create a subscription tier for podcasts is the logical result of our approach to our business across digital and print: we produce premium journalism for subscribers around the world and make it available at a fair price,” said Cohn. “We think podcasting ought to follow that model, and we believe this initiative will enable further investment in our audio offerings.

The pre-launch marketing campaign was very successful, with tens of thousands of new subscribers pre-purchasing 1-year subscriptions to EP+.

In total, hundreds of thousands of new and existing Economist subscribers have now listened to locked EP+ content through The Economist app, Apple podcasts, Spotify, private RSS and many other supported platforms. Total listens to EP+ shows number in the multiple millions.

The launch of EP+ was covered by many media outlets, including Axios, Washington Post,, PodPod, as well as CNN’s Reliable Sources, just to name a few. Axios’s article was also part of “Axios Media Trends”, a newsletter by Sara Fischer regarding the trends that are reshaping the digital media ecosystem.

EP+ adds value to our current Economist subscribers and will allow The Economist to pursue the creation and development of new series, as well as reach new and different audiences.



To contact a company representative about this campaign, click here for the INMA Member Directory

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